Keeping Cavies safe over Summer!
Summer can be a huge killer for cavies. They can easily get heat distress and it can be fatal. To prevent Heat distress in cavies the main things are to make sure they are kept cool at all times. Fans and air conditioners in your caviary are a great idea. Also frozen ice blocks are good. Also making sure that they have a plenty of water at all times. NEVER leave a cavy in full sun during the hot months. If you have them in grass runs make sure there is plenty of shade and water. Also hanging wet towels over runs/cages works.
I advise not to breed cavies over the summer months as it’s risky. However if you do happen to have a pregnant sow in the heat, make her your highest priority of care. I suggest keeping her inside if possible. And if that is not a possibility make sure outside that she is in a cool area and check her regularly as Toxemia is very common in the heat.
If you suspect that one of your cavies is getting heat distressed. You MUST act fast. Immediately cool the cavy down. You can use a spray bottle to spray water in their coat. This is a lot more effective than dunking them in water. Never make them to cold and wet or they may catch a chill. Once they are wet put them indoors or somewhere shady. You can also sit them next to a fan or give them an ice block.
Any cavy can get heat stroke, however I tend to find that it is more common in Rex and Longhaired cavies. Provided cavies are checked regularly and kept cool, you shouldn’t have to many issues with them through Summer.
© Jasmine Howlett 2012